, 3 min read

Installing OpenLiteSpeed on Arch Linux

Original post is here eklausmeier.goip.de/blog/2023/08-13-installing-openlitespeed-on-arch-linux.

Unfortunately the AUR package for installing OpenLiteSpeed is broken. Additionally, the manual installation of OpenLiteSpeed via self-compilation is a mess.

1. Downloading rpm. Here we describe using the rpm repository of /edge/centos/8/x86_64/RPMS/. Essentially, this is a precompiled binary in rpm-form. Our version is openlitespeed-1.7.16-1.el8.x86_64.rpm. Another good candidate is openlitespeed-1.7.17-1.el9.x86_64.rpm in /centos/9/x86_64/RPMS/.

2. Unpacking rpm. In the following ols stands for the downloaded rpm-file without the rpm-suffix.

  1. Convert rpm to cpio: rpm2cpio ols.rpm > ols.cpio.zstd
  2. Uncompress file with unzstd old.cpio.zstd
  3. Unpack resulting cpio-archive with cpio -idmv < ols.cpio
  4. Move directory ./usr/local/lsws to /usr/local/lsws, and chown -R root:root if you haven't created the files as root user

3. Start webserver.

  1. Create Unix group lsadm, and user lsadm with /bin/nologin shell
  2. conf-directory: chown -R lsadm:lsadm /usr/local/lsws/conf
  3. Check missing libraries: ldd bin/openlitespeed, I had to install missing libcrypt.so.1 library via pacman -S libxcrypt-compat
  4. Copy systemd-service for start- and stop, enable service:
cp -p /usr/local/lsws/admin/misc/lshttpd.service /usr/lib/systemd/system/lshttpd.service
systemctl enable lshttpd

The litespeed process changes chmod of various config files to be executable. This is just silly, but you have no chance to correct it, as with every restart of litespeed the chmod is changed again. In total OpenLiteSpeed needs 67 MB of disk space under /usr/local/lsws.

4. Admin console. The original installation contains some glitches, which need to be corrected. Though, overall the admin console is not very useful.

  1. Admin console needs below symbolic links: Go to /usr/local/lsws. Then mkdir -p lsphp73/bin lsphp74/bin, change to these two directories and create symlink ln -s ../../fcgi-bin/lsphp
  2. Copy a pem-file to admin/conf/, symlink webadmin.crt and webadmin.key to this file, as the admin console enforces https. Alternatively you can change admin/conf/admin_config.conf and edit keyfile and certfile
  3. Login to admin console does not work out-of-the-box, therefore edit file admin/html.open/lib/CAuthorizer.php in line 261 and change return $auth; to return true; in PHP function authUser() to fix the authorization issue
  4. Admin console logs you out all the time: in PHP function __construct() in lib/CAuthorizer.php comment out the entire if clause for if (isset($_SESSION['timeout']) ...
  5. Admin console floods the log-file with various INFO and NOTICE messages
  6. Start web-server with /usr/local/lsws/bin/lswsctrl start, webserver listens on port 8088, admin console listens on port 7080

As the admin console is basically useless, I recommend to simply disable it with disableWebadmin 1 in conf/httpd_config.conf. Put it right after the servername line.

Restarting the webserver:

  1. stop webserver with lswsctrl stop
  2. remove cache with rm -rf cachedata and any sockets with rm admin/tmp/admin.*
  3. possibly remove old log file: rm logs/*.log
  4. start with lswsctrl start.

5. PHP via FastCGI. OpenLiteSpeed comes with PHP 5.6 installed as special LS-API compiled binary. This version is way too old. Below steps configure PHP as FastCGI.

  1. Edit conf/httpd_config.conf and change user and group to http from nobody. The Linux user http is also employed by php-fpm. Change directory ownership chown -R lsadm:http conf, and chown -R http:http tmp`.
  2. Enable PHP-FPM (PHP FastCGI Process Manager): systemctl enable php-fpm
  3. Start PHP-FPM: systemctl start php-fpm
  4. Configure extprocessor for OpenLiteSpeed in conf/httpd_config.conf:
user                      http
group                     http

extprocessor fcgiphp {
   type                    fcgi
   address                 uds://run/php-fpm/php-fpm.sock
   note                    PHP FPM
   maxConns                10
   initTimeout             20
   retryTimeout            10
   respBuffer              0
   autoStart               0

Domain socket in extprocessor must match the value in /etc/php/php-fpm.d/www.conf. OpenLiteSpeed should not start php-fpm, therefore autostart 0. The virtual host configuration is as below. The important part is the "context" which relates to fcgi.

# Virtual host config for klmblog
# 13-Aug-2023

docRoot                   /srv/http/
enableGzip                1
enableBr                  1

errorlog $VH_ROOT/logs/error.log {
  useServer               1
  logLevel                DEBUG
  rollingSize             10M

accesslog $VH_ROOT/logs/access.log {
  useServer               0
  rollingSize             10M
  keepDays                30
  compressArchive         0

context /p/ {
  type                    fcgi
  handler                 fcgiphp
  addDefaultCharset       off

context / {
  location                /srv/http/
  allowBrowse             1

  rewrite  {

  addDefaultCharset       off

  phpIniOverride  {


6. Tips and tricks.

  1. The process-id's of the webserver are pidof litespeed
  2. Before accessing the webserver with any queries, check logs/error.log for any entries with [ERROR]